Read Critical Summaries of Systematic Reviews

May 19, 2010

Wondering how medication effects orthodontic tooth movement? Or if antibiotics used at the time of implant placement prevent complications?

Here is a way to get valid answers, fast; bookmark the American Dental Association’s Evidence Based Dentistry portal.

In addition to its database of systematic reviews of oral health topics, the ADA provides one-page, concise, user-friendly assessments of  systematic reviews. Known as critical summaries, these  assessments are composed by ADA Evidence Reviewers.  New critical summaries are constantly added, recent additions include:

To be updated each time a critical summary is published, subscribe to the ADA’s RSS feed.


Read Summaries of Systematic Reviews

March 25, 2010

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could find all the systematic reviews pertaining to dentistry in one place?  You can!

The American Dental Association (ADA)  Evidence Based Dentistry website includes a database of systematic reviews in oral health. The reviews may be found by searching the site or using the ADA’s drill down topic menu.

Even better, the ADA provides  critical summaries of many of these  systematic reviews.  Critical summaries are brief, concise assessments of a review that are written by ADA Evidence Reviewers.  These reviewers are trained  in the critical appraisal of scientific literature.

Here is a list of the most recently published critical summaries:

Xylitol and Dental Caries

July 31, 2009

Xylitol is a natural sugar alcohol found in some food products and used as a sugar substitute.  Studies strongly suggest that xylitol is non-cariogenic.  That is, xylitol decreases streptococcus mutans levels in plaque and saliva, thus reducing the incidence of dental caries.

Despite these findings, there is little information on the amount of xylitol needed in food products to be effective.  In addition, xylitol is not a clearly labeled ingredient on food packages.

According to the HealthPartners Dental Group and Clinics caries guideline, “xylitol can significantly reduce caries progression if used for five minutes 3-4 times a day after meals and snacks.”  The guideline also states that at least 4 grams of xylitol should be consumed daily.”

In its revised Policy on the use of Xlyitol in Caries Prevention, The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry stated that they support preventive strategies that use sugar substitutes.  However, the academy recommends further research  and encourages clear labeling of products which contain xylitol.

ADA Launches Center for Evidence-Based Dentistry Web Site

March 10, 2009

I am excited to announce the all new Evidence-Based Dentistry web site from the American Dental Association, prepared by dentists for dentists and their patients.  This site provides access to the most current and clinically relevant information.

Nicely organized by three categories, the site brings together:

  • A Database of systematic reviews—Organized by topic, currently over 1300 reviews, some with clinical summaries (short and concise assessments of a systematic review written by trained ADA Evidence Reviewers)
  • Clinical recommendations—tools that can be used when making evidence-based clinical treatment decisions
  • Links to evidence-based dentistry resources—Links to outside resources including tutorials, glossaries and databases

I highly recommend that you explore the site.

Stem Cells for Dentin, Bone and Salivary Regeneration

March 6, 2009

Are you interested in learning more about the use of stem cells for dental therapies?

Dentaltown, an ADA recognized continuing education provider, is offering  a self-instructional program titled “Stem Cells: Emerging Medical and Dental Therapies for the Dental Professional“.    There is no fee for the class and continuing education credits are available.

Additional resources include:

Does Treating Gum Disease Reduce the Incidence of Preterm Birth?

February 4, 2009

Previous research has suggested a link between periodontal disease and premature birth.  Consequently, pregnant woman have been encouraged to undergo periodontal treatment to reduce these risks.

However, recent studies conducted at the Univeristy of North Carolina’s School of Dentistry revealed no significant differences in pregnancy outcomes when study participants received treatment, as compared to those participants who did not.

As a result of these findings, the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) released a statement calling for additional research to “clarify the potential impact that periodontal disease has on the risk of preterm births“.  The AAP also continues to encourage pregnant women to care for their oral health.

You  may also wish to read what the ADA has to say about this topic.

For information on current studies visit or browse this list of recent articles as indexed in PubMed.

Learn about the Link Between Heart Disease and Oral Health

January 27, 2009

February is American Heart Month.  What does this have to do with dentistry?  Come to find out, alot! Research suggests a significant link between oral and cardiovascular health.

In particular, periodontal health seems to play a major role.  Read what the American Academy of Periodontology has to say about periodontal disease and the heart.

You may also wish to browse this list of recent reviews pertaining to oral health and the heart:

Antibiotic prophylaxis for preventing endocarditis and infection in joint prosthesis after dental treatment: a review of new trends and recommendations in the literature. Kotze MJ. SADJ : journal of the South African Dental Association 2008 Sep;63(8):440-4. Review.

Antibiotics for the prophylaxis of bacterial endocarditis in dentistry. Oliver R, Roberts GJ, Hooper L, Worthington HV. “Cochrane database of systematic reviews . 2008 Oct 8;(4):CD003813. Review.

A change of heart: the new infective endocarditis prophylaxis guidelines. Daly CG, Currie BJ, Jeyasingham MS, Moulds RF, Smith JA, Strathmore NF, Street AC, Goss AN. Australian dental journal 2008 Sep;53(3):196-200; quiz 297. Review.

Cardiovascular disease and periodontitis: an update on the associations and risk. Persson GR, Persson RE. Journal of clinical periodontology. 2008 Sep;35(8 Suppl):362-79.

Inflammation, C-reactive protein, and atherothrombosis.  Ridker PM, Silvertown JD. Journal of periodontology 2008 Aug;79(8 s):1544-51.

Dental treatment, antibiotic cover and infective endocarditis: a major rethink. Seymour RA. Dental update. 2008 Jul-Aug;35(6):366-8, 370. Review.

The effect of chronic periodontitis on the development of atherosclerosis: review of the literature. Niedzielska I, Janic T, Cierpka S, Swietochowska E. Medical science monitor : international medical journal of experimental and clinical research. 2008 Jul;14(7):RA103-6.

The link between periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease is probably inflammation. Davé S, Van Dyke T. Oral Dis. 2008 Mar;14(2):95-101.

Associations between periodontal diseases and systemic diseases: a review of the inter-relationships and interactions with diabetes, respiratory diseases, cardiovascular diseases and osteoporosis. Kuo LC, Polson AM, Kang T. Public Health. 2008 Apr;122(4):417-33. Epub 2007 Oct 29.15.

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